# A Tiny Compiler For A Typed Higher Order Language

Hi folks, the last week or so I was a little tired of schoolwork so I decided to scratch out some fun code. The end result is an extremely small compiler for a typed, higher order functional language called PCF to C. In this post I’ll explain attempt to explain the whole thing, from front to back :)

## What’s PCF

First things first, it’s important to define the language we’re compiling. The language, PCF short for “partial computable functions”, is an extremely small language you generally find in a book on programming languages, it originates with Plotkin if I’m not mistaken.

PCF is based around 3 core elements: natural numbers, functions (closures), and general recursion. There are two constants for creating numbers, `Zero`

and `Suc`

. `Zero`

is self explanatory and `Suc e`

is the successor of the natural number `e`

evaluates to. In most programming languages this just means `Suc e = 1 + e`

but `+`

isn’t a primitive in PCF (we can define it as a normal function).

For functions, we have lambdas like you’d find in any functional language. Since PCF includes no polymorphism it’s necessary to annotate the function’s argument with it’s type.

Finally, the weird bit: recursion. In PCF we write recursive things with `fix x : τ in e`

. Here we get to use `x`

in `e`

and we should understand that `x`

“stands for” the whole expression, `fix ...`

. As an example, here’s how we define `+`

.

```
plus =
fix rec : nat -> nat -> nat in
λ m : nat.
λ n : nat.
ifz m {
Zero => n
| Suc x => Suc (rec x n)
}
```

## Now Let’s Compile It

Now compilation is broken up into a bunch of phases and intermediate languages. Even in this small of a compiler there are 3 (count-em) languages so along with the source and target language there are 5 different languages running around inside of this compiler. Each phase with the exception of typechecking is just translating one intermediate language (IL) into another and in the process making one small modification to the program as a whole.

### The AST

This compiler starts with an AST, I have no desire to write a parser for this because parsers make me itchy. Here’s the AST

```
data Ty = Arr Ty Ty
| Nat
deriving Eq
data Exp a = V a
| App (Exp a) (Exp a)
| Ifz (Exp a) (Exp a) (Scope () Exp a)
| Lam Ty (Scope () Exp a)
| Fix Ty (Scope () Exp a)
| Suc (Exp a)
| Zero
deriving (Eq, Functor, Foldable, Traversable)
```

What’s interesting here is that our AST uses `bound`

to manage variables. Unfortunately there really isn’t time to write both a bound tutorial *and* a PCF compiler one. I’ve written about using bound before here otherwise you can just check out the official docs. The important bits here are that `Scope () ...`

binds one variable and that `a`

stands for the free variables in an expression. 3 constructs bind variables here, `Ifz`

for pattern matching, `Fix`

for recursive bindings, and `Lam`

for the argument. Note also that `Fix`

and `Lam`

both must be annotated with a type otherwise stuff like `fix x in x`

and `fn x => x`

are ambiguous.

### Type Checking

First up is type checking. This should be familiar to most people we’ve written a type checker before since PCF is simply typed. We simply have a `Map`

of variables to types. Since we want to go under binders defined using `Scope`

we’ll have to use `instantiate`

. However this demands we be able to create fresh free variables so we don’t accidentally cause clashes. To prevent this we use monad-gen to generate fresh free variables.

To warm up, here’s a helper function to check that an expression has a particular type. This uses the more general `typeCheck`

function which actually produces the type of an expression.

```
type TyM a = MaybeT (Gen a)
assertTy :: (Enum a, Ord a) => M.Map a Ty -> Exp a -> Ty -> TyM a ()
assertTy env e t = (== t) <$> typeCheck env e >>= guard
```

This type checks the variable in an environment (something that stores the types of all of the free variables). Once it receives that it compares it to the type we expected and chucks the resulting boolean into guard. This code is used in places like `Ifz`

where we happen to know that the first expression has the type `Nat`

.

Now on to the main code, `typeCheck`

```
typeCheck :: (Enum a, Ord a) => M.Map a Ty -> Exp a -> TyM a Ty
typeCheck _ Zero = return Nat
typeCheck env (Suc e) = assertTy env e Nat >> return Nat
```

The first two cases for `typeCheck`

are nice and straightforward. All we if we get a `Zero`

then it has type `Nat`

. If we get a `Suc e`

we assert that `e`

is an integer and then the whole thing has the type `Nat`

.

For variables we just look things up in the environment. Since this returns a `Maybe`

it’s nice and easy to just jam it into our `MaybeT`

.

```
typeCheck env (App f a) = typeCheck env f >>= \case
Arr fTy tTy -> assertTy env a fTy >> return tTy
_ -> mzero
```

Application is a little more interesting. We recurse over the function and make sure it has an actual function type. If it does, we assert the argument has the argument type and return the domain. If it doesn’t have a function type, we just fail.

```
typeCheck env (Lam t bind) = do
v <- gen
Arr t <$> typeCheck (M.insert v t env) (instantiate1 (V v) bind)
typeCheck env (Fix t bind) = do
v <- gen
assertTy (M.insert v t env) (instantiate1 (V v) bind) t
return t
```

Type checking lambdas and fixpoints is quite similar. In both cases we generate a fresh variable to unravel the binder with. We know what type this variable is supposed to have because we required explicit annotations so we add that to the map constituting our environment. Here’s where they diverge.

For a fixpoint we want to make sure that the body has the type as we said it would so we use `assertTy`

. For a lambda we infer the body type and return a function from the given argument type to the body type.

```
typeCheck env (Ifz i t e) = do
assertTy env i Nat
ty <- typeCheck env t
v <- gen
assertTy (M.insert v Nat env) (instantiate1 (V v) e) ty
return ty
```

For `Ifz`

we want to ensure that we actually are casing on a `Nat`

so we use `assertTy`

. Next we figure out what type the zero branch returns and make sure that the else branch has the same type.

All in all this type checker is not particularly fascinating since all we have are simple types. Things get a bit more interesting with polymorphism. I’d suggest looking at that if you want to see a more interesting type checker.

### Closure Conversion

Now for our first interesting compilation phase, closure conversion. In this phase we make closures explicit by annotating lambdas and fixpoints with the variables that they close over. Those variables are then explicitly bound in the scope of the lambda. With these changes, our new syntax tree looks like this

```
-- Invariant, Clos only contains VCs, can't be enforced statically due
-- to annoying monad instance
type Clos a = [ExpC a]
data ExpC a = VC a
| AppC (ExpC a) (ExpC a)
| LamC Ty (Clos a) (Scope Int ExpC a)
| FixC Ty (Clos a) (Scope Int ExpC a)
| IfzC (ExpC a) (ExpC a) (Scope () ExpC a)
| SucC (ExpC a)
| ZeroC
deriving (Eq, Functor, Foldable, Traversable)
```

The interesting parts are the additions of `Clos`

and the fact that the `Scope`

for a lambda and a fixpoint now binds an arbitrary number of variables instead of just one. Here if a lambda or fixpoint binds `n`

variables, the first `n - 1`

are stored in the `Clos`

and the last one is the “argument”. Closure conversion is thus just the process of converting an `Exp`

to an `ExpC`

.

```
closConv :: Ord a => Exp a -> Gen a (ExpC a)
closConv (V a) = return (VC a)
closConv Zero = return ZeroC
closConv (Suc e) = SucC <$> closConv e
closConv (App f a) = AppC <$> closConv f <*> closConv a
closConv (Ifz i t e) = do
v <- gen
e' <- abstract1 v <$> closConv (instantiate1 (V v) e)
IfzC <$> closConv i <*> closConv t <*> return e'
```

Most of the cases here are just recursing and building things back up applicatively. There’s the moderately interesting case where we instantiate the else branch of an `Ifz`

with a fresh variable and *then* recurse, but the interesting cases are for fixpoints and lambdas. Since they’re completely identical we only present the case for `Fix`

.

```
closConv (Fix t bind) = do
v <- gen
body <- closConv (instantiate1 (V v) bind)
let freeVars = S.toList . S.delete v $ foldMap S.singleton body
rebind v' = elemIndex v' freeVars <|>
(guard (v' == v) *> (Just $ length freeVars))
return $ FixC t (map VC freeVars) (abstract rebind body)
```

There’s a lot going on here but it boils down into three parts.

- Recurse under the binder
- Gather all the free variables in the body
- Rebind the body together so that all the free variables map to their position in the closure and the argument is
`n`

where`n`

is the number of free variables.

The first is accomplished in much the same way as in the above cases. To gather the number of free variables all we need to is use the readily available notion of a monoid on sets. The whole process is just `foldMap S.singleton`

! There’s one small catch: we don’t want to put the argument into the list of variables we close over so we carefully delete it from the closure. We then convert it to a list which gives us an actual `Clos a`

. Now for the third step we have `rebind`

.

`rebind`

maps a free variable to `Maybe Int`

. It maps a free variable to it’s binding occurrence it has one here. This boils down to using `elemIndex`

to look up somethings position in the `Clos`

we just built up. We also have a special case for when the variable we’re looking at is the “argument” of the function we’re fixing. In this case we want to map it to the last thing we’re binding, which is just `length n`

. To capture the “try this and then that” semantics we use the alternative instance for `Maybe`

which works wonderfully.

With this, we’ve removed implicit closures from our language: one of the passes on our way to C.

### Lambda Lifting

Next up we remove both fixpoints and lambdas from being expressions. We want them to have an explicit binding occurrence because we plan to completely remove them from expressions soon. In order to do this, we define a language with lambdas and fixpoints explicitly declared in let expressions. The process of converting from `ExpC`

to this new language is called “lambda lifting” because we’re lifting things into let bindings.

Here’s our new language.

```
data BindL a = RecL Ty [ExpL a] (Scope Int ExpL a)
| NRecL Ty [ExpL a] (Scope Int ExpL a)
deriving (Eq, Functor, Foldable, Traversable)
data ExpL a = VL a
| AppL (ExpL a) (ExpL a)
| LetL [BindL a] (Scope Int ExpL a)
| IfzL (ExpL a) (ExpL a) (Scope () ExpL a)
| SucL (ExpL a)
| ZeroL
deriving (Eq, Functor, Foldable, Traversable)
```

Much here is the same except we’ve romved both lambdas and fixpoints and replaced them with `LetL`

. `LetL`

works over bindings which are either recursive (`Fix`

) or nonrecursive (`Lam`

). Lambda lifting in this compiler is rather simplistic in how it lifts lambdas: we just boost everything one level up and turn

into

Just like before, this procedure is captured by transforming an `ExpC`

into an `ExpL`

.

```
llift :: Eq a => ExpC a -> Gen a (ExpL a)
llift (VC a) = return (VL a)
llift ZeroC = return ZeroL
llift (SucC e) = SucL <$> llift e
llift (AppC f a) = AppL <$> llift f <*> llift a
llift (IfzC i t e) = do
v <- gen
e' <- abstract1 v <$> llift (instantiate1 (VC v) e)
IfzL <$> llift i <*> llift t <*> return e'
```

Just like in `closConv`

we start with a lot of very boring and trivial “recurse and build back up” cases. These handle everything but the cases where we actually convert constructs into a `LetL`

.

Once again, the interesting cases are pretty much identical. Let’s look at the case for `LamC`

for variety.

```
llift (LamC t clos bind) = do
vs <- replicateM (length clos + 1) gen
body <- llift $ instantiate (VC . (!!) vs) bind
clos' <- mapM llift clos
let bind' = abstract (flip elemIndex vs) body
return (LetL [NRecL t clos' bind'] trivLetBody)
```

Here we first generate a bunch of fresh variables and unbind the body of our lambda. We then recurse on it. We also have to recurse across all of our closed over arguments but since those are variables we know that should be pretty trivial (why do we know this?). Once we’ve straightened out the body and the closure all we do is transform the lambda into a trivial let expression as shown above. Here `trivLetBody`

is.

Which is just a body that returns the first thing bound in the let. With this done, we’ve pretty much transformed our expression language to C. In order to get rid of the nesting, we want to make one more simplification before we actually generate C.

### C-With-Expression

C-With-Expressions is our next intermediate language. It has no notion of nested functions or of fixpoints. I suppose now I should finally fess up to why I keep talking about fixpoints and functions as if they’re the same and why this compiler is handling them identically. The long and short of it is that fixpoints are really a combination of a “fixed point combinator” and a function. Really when we say

It’s as if we had sayed

Where `F`

is a magical constant with the type

`F`

calculates the fixpoint of a function. This means that `f (F f) = F f`

. This formula underlies all recursive bindings (in Haskell too!). In the compiler we basically compile a `Fix`

to a closure (the runtime representation of a function) and pass it to a C function `fixedPoint`

which actually calculates the fixed point. Now it might seem dubious that a function has a fixed point. After all, it would seem that there’s no `x`

so that `(λ (x : nat). suc x) = x`

right? Well the key is to think of these functions as not ranging over just values in our language, but a domain where infinite loops (bottom values) are also represented. In the above equation, the solution is that `x`

should be bottom, an infinite loop. That’s why

should loop! There’s actual some wonderful math going on here about how computable functions are continuous functions over a domain and that we can always calculate the least fixed point of them in this manner. The curious reader is encouraged to check out domain theory.

Anyways, so that’s why I keep handling fixpoints and lambdas in the same way, because to me a fixpoint *is* a lambda + some magic. This is going to become very clear in C-With-Expressions (`FauxC`

from now on) because we’re going to promote both sorts of let bindings to the same thing, a `FauxC`

toplevel function. Without further ado, here’s the next IL.

```
-- Invariant: the Integer part of a FauxCTop is a globally unique
-- identifier that will be used as a name for that binding.
type NumArgs = Int
data BindTy = Int | Clos deriving Eq
data FauxCTop a = FauxCTop Integer NumArgs (Scope Int FauxC a)
deriving (Eq, Functor, Foldable, Traversable)
data BindFC a = NRecFC Integer [FauxC a]
| RecFC BindTy Integer [FauxC a]
deriving (Eq, Functor, Foldable, Traversable)
data FauxC a = VFC a
| AppFC (FauxC a) (FauxC a)
| IfzFC (FauxC a) (FauxC a) (Scope () FauxC a)
| LetFC [BindFC a] (Scope Int FauxC a)
| SucFC (FauxC a)
| ZeroFC
deriving (Eq, Functor, Foldable, Traversable)
```

The big difference is that we’ve lifted things out of let bindings. They now contain references to some global function instead of actually having the value right there. We also tag fixpoints as either fixing an `Int`

or a `Clos`

. The reasons for this will be apparent in a bit.

Now for the conversion. We don’t just have a function from `ExpL`

to `FauxC`

because we also want to make note of all the nested lets we’re lifting out of the program. Thus we use `WriterT`

to gather a lift of toplevel functions as we traverse the program. Other than that this is much like what we’ve seen before.

```
type FauxCM a = WriterT [FauxCTop a] (Gen a)
fauxc :: ExpL Integer -> FauxCM Integer (FauxC Integer)
fauxc (VL a) = return (VFC a)
fauxc (AppL f a) = AppFC <$> fauxc f <*> fauxc a
fauxc ZeroL = return ZeroFC
fauxc (SucL e) = SucFC <$> fauxc e
fauxc (IfzL i t e) = do
v <- gen
e' <- abstract1 v <$> fauxc (instantiate1 (VL v) e)
IfzFC <$> fauxc i <*> fauxc t <*> return e'
```

In the first couple cases we just recurse. as we’ve seen before. Things only get interesting once we get to `LetL`

```
fauxc (LetL binds e) = do
binds' <- mapM liftBinds binds
vs <- replicateM (length binds) gen
body <- fauxc $ instantiate (VL . (!!) vs) e
let e' = abstract (flip elemIndex vs) body
return (LetFC binds' e')
```

In this case we recurse with the function `liftBinds`

across all the bindings, then do what we’ve done before and unwrap the body of the let and recurse in it. So the meat of this transformation is in `liftBinds`

.

```
where liftBinds (NRecL t clos bind) = lifter NRecFC clos bind
liftBinds (RecL t clos bind) = lifter (RecFC $ bindTy t) clos bind
lifter bindingConstr clos bind = do
guid <- gen
vs <- replicateM (length clos + 1) gen
body <- fauxc $ instantiate (VL . (!!) vs) bind
let bind' = abstract (flip elemIndex vs) body
tell [FauxCTop guid (length clos + 1) bind']
bindingConstr guid <$> mapM fauxc clos
bindTy (Arr _ _) = Clos
bindTy Nat = Int
```

To lift a binding all we do is generate a globally unique identifier for the toplevel. Once we have that we that we can unwrap the particular binding we’re looking at. This is going to comprise the body of the `TopC`

function we’re building. Since we need it to be `FauxC`

code as well we recurse on it. No we have a bunch of faux-C code for the body of the toplevel function. We then just repackage the body up into a binding (a `FauxCTop`

needs one) and use `tell`

to make a note of it. Once we’ve done that we return the stripped down let binding that just remembers the guid that we created for the toplevel function.

In an example, this code transformers

into

With this done our language is now 80% of the way to C!

### Converting To SSA-ish C

Converting our faux-C language to actual C has one complication: C doesn’t have `let`

expressions. Given this, we have to flatten out a faux-C expression so we can turn a let expression into a normal C declaration. This conversion is *almost* a conversion to single static assignment form, SSA. I say almost because there’s precisely one place where we break the single assignment discipline. This is just because it seemed rather pointless to me to introduce an SSA IL with φ just so I could compile it to C. YMMV.

This is what LLVM uses for its intermediate language and because of this I strongly suspect regearing this compiler to target LLVM should be pretty trivial.

Now we’re using a library called c-dsl to make generating the C less painful, but there’s still a couple of things we’d like to add. First of all, all our names our integers so we have `i2e`

and `i2d`

for converting an integer into a C declaration or an expression.

```
i2d :: Integer -> CDeclr
i2d = fromString . ('_':) . show
i2e :: Integer -> CExpr
i2e = var . fromString . ('_':) . show
```

We also have a shorthand for the type of all expression in our generated C code.

Finally, we have our writer monad and helper function for implementing the SSA conversion. We write C99 block items and use `tellDecl`

binding an expression to a fresh variable and then we return this variable.

```
type RealCM = WriterT [CBlockItem] (Gen Integer)
tellDecl :: CExpr -> RealCM CExpr
tellDecl e = do
i <- gen
tell [CBlockDecl $ decl taggedTy (i2d i) $ Just e]
return (i2e i)
```

Next we have the conversion procedure. Most of this is pretty straightforward because we shell out to calls in the runtime system for all the hardwork. We have the following RTS functions

`mkZero`

, create a zero value`inc`

, increment an integer value`dec`

, decrement an integer value`apply`

, apply a closure to an argument`mkClos`

, make a closure with a closing over some values`EMPTY`

, an empty pointer, useful for default values`isZero`

, check if something is zero`fixedPoint`

, find the fixed point of function`INT_SIZE`

, the size of the runtime representation of an integer`CLOS_SIZE`

, the size of the runtime representation of a closure

Most of this code is therefore just converting the expression to SSA form and using the RTS functions to shell do the appropriate computation at each step. Note that c-dsl provides a few overloaded string instances and so to generate the C code to apply a function we just use `"foo"#[1, "these", "are", "arguments"]`

.

The first few cases for conversion are nice and straightforward.

```
realc :: FauxC CExpr -> RealCM CExpr
realc (VFC e) = return e
realc (AppFC f a) = ("apply" #) <$> mapM realc [f, a] >>= tellDecl
realc ZeroFC = tellDecl $ "mkZero" # []
realc (SucFC e) = realc e >>= tellDecl . ("inc"#) . (:[])
```

We take advantage of the fact that `realc`

returns it’s result and we can almost make this look like the applicative cases we had before. One particularly slick case is how `Suc`

works. We compute the value of `e`

and apply the result to `suc`

. We then feed this expression into `tellDecl`

which binds it to a fresh variable and returns the variable. Haskell is pretty slick.

```
realc (IfzFC i t e) = do
outi <- realc i
deci <- tellDecl ("dec" # [outi])
let e' = instantiate1 (VFC deci) e
(outt, blockt) <- lift . runWriterT $ (realc t)
(oute, blocke) <- lift . runWriterT $ (realc e')
out <- tellDecl "EMPTY"
let branch b tempOut =
CCompound [] (b ++ [CBlockStmt . liftE $ out <-- tempOut]) undefNode
ifStat =
cifElse ("isZero"#[outi]) (branch blockt outt) (branch blocke oute)
tell [CBlockStmt ifStat]
return out
```

In this next case we’re translating `Ifz`

. For this we obviously need to compute the value of `i`

. We do that by recursing and storing the result in `outi`

. Now we want to be able to use 1 less than the value of `i`

in case we go into the successor branch. This is done by calling `dec`

on `outi`

and storing it for later.

Next we do something a little odd. We recurse on the branches of `Ifz`

but we definitely don’t want to compute both of them! So we can’t just use a normal recursive call. If we did they’d be added to the block we’re building up in the writer monad. So we use `lift . runWriterT`

to give us back the blocks *without* adding them to the current one we’re building. Now it’s just a matter of generating the appropriate `if`

statement.

To do this we add one instruction to the end of both branches, to assign to some output variable. This ensures that no matter which branch we go down we’ll end up the result in one place. This is also the one place where we are no longer doing SSA. Properly speaking we should write this with a φ but who has time for that? :)

Finally we build add the if statement and the handful of declarations that precede it to our block. Now for the last case.

```
realc (LetFC binds bind) = do
bindings <- mapM goBind binds
realc $ instantiate (VFC . (bindings !!)) bind
where sizeOf Int = "INT_SIZE"
sizeOf Clos = "CLOS_SIZE"
goBind (NRecFC i cs) =
("mkClos" #) <$> (i2e i :) . (fromIntegral (length cs) :)
<$> mapM realc cs
>>= tellDecl
goBind (RecFC t i cs) = do
f <- ("mkClos" #) <$> (i2e i :) . (fromIntegral (length cs) :)
<$> mapM realc cs
>>= tellDecl
tellDecl ("fixedPoint"#[f, sizeOf t])
```

For our last case we have to deal with lets. For this we simply traverse all the bindings which are now flat and then flatten the expression under the binder. When we `mapM`

over the bindings we actually get back a list of all the expressions each binding evaluated to. This is perfect for use with `instantiate`

making the actual toplevel function quite pleasant. `goBind`

is slightly less so.

In the nonrecursive case all we have to do is create a closure. So `goBind`

of a nonrecursive binding shells out to `mkClos`

. This `mkClos`

is applied to the number of closed over expressions as well as all the closed over expressions. This is because `mkClos`

is variadic. Finally we shove the result into `tellDecl`

as usual. For a recursive call there’s a slight difference, namely after doing all of that we apply `fixedPoint`

to the output *and* to the size of the type of the thing we’re fixing. This is why we kept types around for these bindings! With them we can avoid dragging the size with every value since we know it statically.

Next, we have a function for converting a faux C function into an actual function definition. This is the function that we use `realc`

in.

```
topc :: FauxCTop CExpr -> Gen Integer CFunDef
topc (FauxCTop i numArgs body) = do
binds <- gen
let getArg = (!!) (args (i2e binds) numArgs)
(out, block) <- runWriterT . realc $ instantiate getArg body
return $
fun [taggedTy] ('_' : show i) [decl taggedTy $ ptr (i2d binds)] $
CCompound [] (block ++ [CBlockStmt . creturn $ out]) undefNode
where indexArg binds i = binds ! fromIntegral i
args binds na = map (VFC . indexArg binds) [0..na - 1]
```

This isn’t the most interesting function. We have one array of arguments to our C function, and then we unbind the body of the FauxC function by indexing into this array. It’s not explicitly stated in the code but the array contains the closed over expressions for the first n - 1 entries and the nth is the actual argument to the function. This is inline with how the variables are actually bound in the body of the function which makes unwrapping the body to index into the argument array very simple. We then call `realc`

which transforms our faux-c expression into a block of actual C code. We add one last statement to the end of the block that returns the final outputted variable. All that’s left to do is bind it up into a C function and call it a day.

### Putting It All Together

Finally, at the end of it all we have a function from expression to `Maybe CTranslUnit`

, a C program.

```
compile :: Exp Integer -> Maybe CTranslUnit
compile e = runGen . runMaybeT $ do
assertTy M.empty e Nat
funs <- lift $ pipe e
return . transUnit . map export $ funs
where pipe e = do
simplified <- closConv e >>= llift
(main, funs) <- runWriterT $ fauxc simplified
i <- gen
let topMain = FauxCTop i 1 (abstract (const Nothing) main)
funs' = map (i2e <$>) (funs ++ [topMain])
(++ [makeCMain i]) <$> mapM topc funs'
makeCMain entry =
fun [intTy] "main"[] $ hBlock ["call"#[i2e entry]]
```

This combines all the previous compilation passes together. First we typecheck and ensure that the program is a `Nat`

. Then we closure convert it and immediately lambda lift. This simplified program is then fed into `fauxc`

giving a `fauxc`

expression for main and a bunch of functions called by main. We wrap up the main expression in a function that ignores all it’s arguments. We then map `realc`

over all of these fauxc functions. This gives us actual C code. Finally, we take on a trivial C main to call the generated code and return the whole thing.

And that’s our PCF compiler.

## Wrap Up

Well if you’ve made it this far congratulations. We just went through a full compiler from a typed higher order language to C. Along the way we ended up implementing

- A Type Checker
- Closure Conversion
- Lambda Lifting
- Conversion to Faux-C
- SSA Conversion

If you’d like to fiddle a bit more, some fun project might be

- Writing type checkers for all the intermediate languages. They’re all typeable except perhaps Faux-C
- Implement compilation to LLVM instead of C. As I said before, this shouldn’t be awful

Cheers,

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